Finding the best facial cleanser isn't as easy as strolling the skincare aisle of your local drugstore. Sometimes it takes spending more than a few dollars and unexpected breakouts to discover a face wash that works best for your skin type. However, the editors here have lucked out thanks to word of mouth. So to pay it forward, we are sharing the facial cleansers we swear by.
Check out our top picks below and let us know your favorite facial cleanser.
Noxzema Original Deep Cleansing Cream, $5, walgreens.com
"This solid cream is gentle, soothing, dissolves makeup and never dries my skin out." - Brie Dyas, senior editor
Biotherm Biosource Foaming Cleansing Water, $35, rakuten.com
"It's great for my sensitive skin since it's so light, and I also love it because it barely has a scent. The only downside is that it can be hard to find!" - Michelle Persad, fashion and beauty assistant
Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel, $12, mariobadescu.com
"Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel is super light, refreshing and gentle enough to use twice (or even three) times a day." - Renee Jacques, intern
Acure Facial Cleanser Cleansing Gel, $15, acureorganics.com
"I use Acure facial cleanser. It's organic and great for sensitive skin." - Elyse Siegel, deputy managing editor
Aveeno Positively Radiant Brightening Cleanser, $8, walgreens.com
"One of my biggest skincare issues is hyperpigmentation. So I reach for this brightening cleanser to keep my complexion glowing and free of blemishes." - Dana Oliver, senior beauty editor
NeoStrata Foaming Glycolic Wash, $35, neostrata.com
"I have rosacea, so this is incredibly gentle and doesn't leave my skin feeling raw or taut. It has no scent and no scary ingredients, either -- which is really hard to find these days. It's also really hard to find, so I order it online." - Rebecca Adams, associate editor
Johnson's Baby Shampoo, $4, target.com
"For the past eight or nine months, I've been using Johnson's Baby Shampoo as face wash. It's amazing because it works as a makeup remover and a very gentle cleanser for those of us with sensitive skin. [This shampoo is] especially nice around the eyes -- no tears and you can get to the roots of your eyelashes." - Raydene Salinas, photo editor and photographer
Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Liquid Soap, $10, drbronner.com
"I use Dr. Bronner's for my entire body but you can use it for straight up everything. Even shampoo or toothpaste. (It's a regular apple cider vinegar!) I use peppermint because it makes my skin tingle in a way that's super refreshing in summer." - Lauren Leibowitz, associate editor
Are you washing your face wrong? Find out:
1. Keep It Simple
Because everyone’s skin is a little different, there’s no single miracle fash wash. But, something we all can do is look for a cleanser that is simple. “Cleansing should take away dirt, germs and excess oil, but not appropriate skin moisture and healthy cells,” Krant says. Find the gentlest cleanser that will “get the job done,” as she puts it, but nothing too harsh that leaves redness or rashes.
2. Don't Obsess
If your skin is sedentary on a certain day -- meaning you didn't sweat or put on heavy makeup -- Krant says skipping a day of washing your face isn’t a sin. On the other hand, she points out, “'it’s best not to let old makeup or sunscreen sit around too long or go to sleep with you.” Generally, washing your face once or twice a day is a good plan to stick to. Anything more than that is excessive (unless there are special circumstances prescribed by your dermatologist), and can lead to “rebound overproduction of oil and breakouts.”
3. Cool It
While it might feel good to warm up with a steamy splash of water, Krant says <a href="http://www.livestrong.com/article/221077-how-to-reduce-the-appearance-of-pores-on-my-face/">icy cold </a>or <a href="http://www.rosacea.org/patients/skincare/facialcleansing.php">lukewarm</a> water both have their benefits. Excessivley hot water will “strip healthy natural oils from your skin too quickly.”
4. Exfoliate Sparingly
Exfoliating definitely has skin benefits: The scrub can increase circulation for a rosy glow, and it helps to remove dead skin cells. But <em>excessive</em> exfoliation can “lead down the path to trouble.” Krant recommends a gentle exfoliation one or twice a week, max.
5. Pat Yourself Dry
A lot of us rush our routines, and wipe our wet faces on whatever’s closest to the sink: a used towel, the shirt we’re wearing. But it’s important to use a gentle, clean cloth to dry up. Krant recommends patting your skin, rather than rubbing, and letting a “fine mist of water to remain so when you apply your moisturizer it will seal the moitsture into the surface of the skin.”
6. Winterize Your Regimen
“The most important thing to watch out for in winter is overcleansing and overdrying,” Krant says. In the cooler temps we’re prone to taking longer, hotter showers and spending more time in the overheated indoor air, both of which can dry out the face -- and fast. Krant says it’s important not to wash your face excessively and to introduce a moisturizer, if it’s right for your skin. Also cruical is an SPF: She suggests choosing a moisturizer with an SPF of 15 in the winter (and upping it to SPF 30 in the summer, when we spend more time outdoors).
7. Watch Your Eyes
Fight the urge splash your eyes open to wake yourself up on groggy mornings. The skin around your eyes is delicate and thin, so it it needs to be <a href="http://www.aad.org/skin-conditions/skin-health-tips/face-washing-101/face-washing-101">treated even more gently than the rest of your face</a>. Things to keep in mind? "Use a gentle eye makeup remover and don't use harsh soaps or cleansers directly on delicate eyelids," she says.
You've Never Felt This Refreshed In Your Life
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